The jet engine was invented by Sir Frank Whittle in the years before the Second World War. Much of the development work took place at the Ladywood foundry in Lutterworth. Whittle is remembered by a sculpture of a jet on a roundabout just outside the town and by this more modest memorial in its centre.

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

The Prime Minister should set up an all party cabinet committee on Brexit says Liberal Democrat leader @TimFarron — Sky News (@SkyNews) June 13, 2017 From a Liberal Democrat press release: Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron has written to Theresa May calling for a cross-party joint cabinet committee to be established to negotiate Brexit. He has called for a committee made up of MPs, selected by their parties and representative of the political make-up of parliament. The team would become the front line of negotiations with Brussels and ultimately have to agree to the final deal, which could then ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack
Tue 13th

Six of the Best 698

British journalism failed in its coverage of the general election, argues Brian Cathcart. John Pugh explains why the Liberal Democrats lost Southport: "We lost in Southport not because we'd forgotten how to campaign or even because of the genius of our opponents but because the party did not have a clear enough national message that connected emotionally and personally with the local electorate and in a quasi- presidential election in 2017 that mattered." "One glimmer of hope is that the DUP, for all its sectarian history and obscurantist beliefs, is pragmatic about economic policy. It will kill off the idea ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

A post for Liberal Democrat members as the headline clue suggests... It's natural after any major event to start thinking, talking and writing about what could or should have been done differently, and so what should change for the future. The temptation also is to slip from that into lecturing others, especially those who are in some way remote from you – such as the folks at HQ, on what they should do differently. You may have noticed me doing that too. But the political party isn't only made up of others. It's also made up of ourselves. Some of ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack

The train arrived at Kokkaigijido-Mae station, and I made my way through a maze of tunnels to reach the exit. As I reached the top of the final staircase a crashing boom stopped me in my tracks. What was that? I crept up the stairs and peered outside. A storm had manifested. The base of ... Continue reading The National Diet – An Insight to Japanese Democracy

Posted by Ryan Lailvaux on Reforming Ryan

Reaction to the news that Roger Helmer is to stand down as one of the East Midlands MEPs is meeting with a mixed reaction across the region. Reports are reaching us of wailing and gnashing of teeth in Market Bosworth and the more remote regions of Kesteven, while there has been dancing in the streets of Matlock. As we go to press there are Facebook rumours of outbreaks of public disorder in Cropwell Bishop. But I thought it would be appropriate if Liberal England paid its own tribute to Mr Helmer. He has certainly given us plenty to write about. ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

After last week's General Election, we face arguably the most uncertain period of our post-war political history. As the clock ticks down to our exit from the EU on 29th March 2019, the question of how we conduct these negotiations effectively alongside the profound instability of our domestic politics remains unresolved. Neither the Conservatives, nor Labour, have the strength to take the lead in this process by themselves. Labour, although performing much better than expected, has won too few seats to be able to act alone, and the Conservatives remain so divided over Europe that even a confidence and supply ...

Posted by Gordon Lynch on Liberal Democrat Voice
Tue 13th

My Take on GE 2017

Note, this was written on Saturday for the Yorker, but as it's still not been published there I may as well throw it out now because I guarantee it will be out of date by the end of the week. From the election of Donald Trump, to Brexit, to the great victory of Emmanuel Macron, [...]

Posted by Mike Green on Squiffy Liberalism

What an election for Liberal Democrats, a squeeze in Lib Dem votes with millions of our supporters deciding the vote tactically to stop the expected Conservative landslide & back Labour to block a Hard Brexit. It worked, and unexpectedly a hung parliament resulted. While it cannot be denied, that we have not yet reconnected to disaffected 2010 voters, the Libdemfightback has seen a stealth destruction of Theresa May's mandate and authority. Despite the attempt of the Dead Woman walking to forge a zombie government, the young 18-35 Remain voters now demand attention from both main parties, Labour now 64% dependent ...

Posted on liberal-free-voice

The second day of the journey is reported movement - White was with the other half of the army at Askeaton all day. The thirteenth my Lorde Ormonde marched from Kylmallocke, over Slieve-Ghyr, by the waie of the Viscount Roche's countrie, and camped that night three myles beyond Buttevant, at a place called Lysgrifyn in Ownybaragh, a territory belonging to the Viscount Barry, having with him of his own force, 120 horsemenne, 100 Irish footmen. 210 shott on horse back, and 3 bands of English footmenne, whereof were Captain St. George Bowser (a painful serviceable gentleman), Captain Makworth, and Captain ...


Having taken a few days break from blogging after confessing my election punditry sins, I figured it was time to get back into the habit because who knows when I'm going to be called on to write a general election diary blog again? Will it be in September or October, or might I even have to wait until May next year for the whole thing to come crashing down? It's because that next election is so close that we don't have the usual time we might have had for vacillation about things we'd like to see happen when it comes ...

Posted by Nick on What You Can Get Away With
Tue 13th

I Aten't Ded

Just letting my regular reader (Mrs Trellis of North Wales) know that I'm still here. It's been a busy week — not only was there an election, but my wife had her citizenship ceremony on Wednesday, I got several bits ... Continue reading →

Posted by Andrew Hickey on Sci-Ence! Justice Leak!

This afternoon Theresa May announced that Philip Dunne will continue as Minister of Health under Jeremy Hunt.

Posted by andybodders on Andy Boddington

In my previous post I reviewed some of the problems associated with referendums, in particular the conundrum posed by the "once in a lifetime" proposition. It is no wonder that two of our previous Prime Ministers described them as un-British, and a tool for dictators and demagogues. Here, as a break from all the election talk, I add a few more criticisms for good measure. But despite the shortcomings that referendums undoubtedly have, my conclusion remains the same: we still need another one. Chancy outcomes Referendums can have perverse and unexpected consequences. To take a rather silly example, suppose the ...

Posted by John King on Liberal Democrat Voice
Tue 13th

Robbery Hurts

Last night, as I was making my way to Lisbon airport on a crowded metro train some nifty pickpocket succeeded in unfastening my shoulder bag and stealing my wallet. Fortunately, I still had my passport on me, so was able to take my flight back to London, with just enough time to make a formal [...]

Posted by jonathanfryer on Jonathan Fryer
Tue 13th

After the Earthquake

When the Exit poll arrived I was, for a moment, utterly elated. The Conservatives had finally done enough to alienate even their most die-hard supporters. Fox hunting, grammar schools, dementia tax and above all the Kamikaze Brexit -not to mention all the other festering, broiling drivel of their brain dead manifesto and vacuous campaign- had finally brought the Tories to defeat. Yet, and yet, Theresa May, in all her tin-eared, out-of-touch, arrogance remains the Prime Minister. Despite Boris Johnson's transparent moves- as George Osborne noted, Johnson has a permanent leadership campaign- in fact Mrs. May, despite electoral embarrassment bordering on ...

Posted by Cicero on Cicero's Songs

My money is on the short (seemingly unnamed road) road which links Sefton Lane to Sefton Meadows Waste Recycling Centre and which also serves Sefton Meadows Garden Centre and the businesses operating out of our long lost snooker hall. Just look at the state of it! Suggested names for the road are Rubbish Road, Landfill Lane, Waste Way and Recycling's Close.

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus

For a brief moment a few days ago, it looked as if Corbyn understood the nature of the moment. He hinted that there could be a shadow cabinet reshuffle, with some of the big names currently languishing on the backbenches coming in from the cold. But just as quickly as that possibility flickered, it seems to be dying again. In the wake of this "brilliant defeat", the good will towards Corbyn will possibly never be higher amongst the PLP (or at least, he shouldn't count on it ever being higher than it is at present). If he takes the opportunity ...

Posted by Nick on The BBC has the appalling story on its web site – see link above This is 2017! What on earth is going on in Pakistan? We should all everywhere welcome our views being challenged, religious or otherwise. Of course, if you wish to have a God then have one but others should always have the right to challenge and reject those views. What's more the governance of any country should have nothing what so ever to do with religion. Religion is a personal thing not one to be pontificated on by any government or judiciary.

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus

This post first appeared on the Radix blog... There are so many candidates for regular circles of life, from Halley's Comet to the Kondratieff Cycle. I have been arguing for a year or two that we were hurtling towards a major political and economic shift, not because of the rise of Trump or Corbyn, but because there appears to be a forty-year cycle involved. The last one was in 1979, after all. Before that, it was 1940; before that 1906, so perhaps it is a little shorter than four decades. But either way, we are due for something. But when ...

Posted by David Boyle on The Real Blog

Here's my current top ten:Jen Williams - I'm with Gadsden on this, Jen is the best political journalist in the UK right now. Mancunian focus, but covers national stuff too. Forensic with information, and does proper investigative journalism as well as straight reporting. If you only follow one from this list, make it Jen. Marina Hyde - absolutely brutal yet hilariously funny political columnist. I've never yet read a Marina column that didn't make me laugh, then think, then laugh again. Samira Ahmed - freelancer who pops up all over the place, often Radio 4. Her twitter feed is exactly ...

I want to preface whatever I write in this blog post with I don't think anyone can say any campaign manager, any campaigner or any activist didn't really go for it. The hard work and dedication of these people should not be questioned in any way, shape or form. However lessons need to be learned with regards to what message needs to be used for future election campaigns. Quite simply the Lib Dem message was muddled and watered down to such a degree that it made little impact. It wasn't gruel but it was a long way from a nice ...

Posted by neilmonnery on The Rambles of Neil Monnery
Tue 13th

Puppet Protest

May you be cursed to live in interesting times... so says the misquoted and mis-credited proverb. Theatre has a responsibility to reflect the state of the nation, but one of the issues that theatre has is generally the long lead time to staging a piece. Several productions over the past year have looked at old events, such as Limehouse and This House, which depict political events from years ago and allow the audience to draw out the similarities, and therefore, maybe, give some idea of what might happen next in our current crisis. It can be difficult to anticipate crises, ...

Posted by Dani Tougher on More Than Nothing

A benefit concert for the Manchester Arena emergency fund will be held at Bury Parish Church on Sunday 16 July at 7pm. Called "From Darkness into Light", the concert is a collaboration between Besses Boys brass band, Bury Community Choir and Bury Young Voices, and will support the families of those killed and injured in the attack. It will bring together more than 100 performers aged 7 to 70. Tickets are £5 and will be on sale from Monday 19 June at Bury Parish Church cafe and The Fusilier Museum. All proceeds will go to the Manchester fund. The tribute ...

Posted by prestwichfocus on Tim Pickstone

I have today launched my June 2017 Update to West End Community Council. Subjects covered include: • Smell issues - Riverside• Ninewells Village - paths repairs The Community Council meets tonight at Logie St John's (Cross) Church Hall at 7pm - all residents welcome. You can download my Update here.

With both Labour and the Conservatives pledging in their manifestos to end freedom of movement and to leave the single market, it is difficult to see how we are going to end up with anything but a hard Brexit. However, as the Independent reports, dissent is stirring beneath the surface of both major parties in a way that could bring about change in the Government's stance. The paper says that Labour and Conservative MPs have reportedly met for secret talks amid growing pressure on Prime Minister Theresa May to take a cross-party approach to Brexit in light of the hung ...

Posted by Peter Black on Peter Black

The recently elected Conservative councillor for South Blyth ward on Blyth Town Council has given his address on his register of interests form as New Hartley. I know that there is no legal requirement for a councillor to live in the area of his town or parish council, or own property in the area, but it doesn't exactly back up the word "local" does it? Note for people outside this area, New Hartley is a village about 5 miles away, covered at parish level by Seaton Valley Community Council

Posted by Alisdair Gibbs-Barton on Alisdair Gibbs-Barton

Theresa May's appointment of Michael Gove as head of the environment and farming ministry, Defra, is a disaster in the making. He is likely to sweep away many of the regulations that protect the environment and biodiversity. Politically, we live in curious times with no certainty that the government will be stable or strong enough to survive the Brexit process. Theresa May has reappointed most of her pre-election cabinet, but she moved Andrea Leadsom from Defra to become Leader of the House of Commons. Michael Gove has been brought back to cabinet as Secretary of State for Environment, Food and ...

Posted by andybodders on Andy Boddington

The Fixed Term Parliaments Act has no shortage of detractors and is often misunderstood. One of the (misplaced) criticisms that has been made of the FTPA is the effect it would have on constitutional convention and practice concerning the vote on a Queen's Speech or a Budget. I wrote this post to try to explain both how the convention concerning the appointment and resignation of governments operates and how, if at all, this has been affected by the FTPA. The Historical Position Historically, a Commons defeat on a major bill that was core to the governing platform of the incumbent ...

Posted by Graeme Cowie on Predictable Paradox